On we go into season 2 of Rob Tait’s Roma save. With Champions League football on the horizon, how can Rob improve Roma’s squad to make a challenge for Serie A and even European glory? What’s Italian for ‘Wheeler Dealer’? Catch up with Part 3 here
The team are back in Rome after a relaxing summer break. I didn’t take a holiday as I was drawing up a Benitez style shopping list of talent to help improve our squad going into season two. Fortunately for me I have the backing of the board after our 2nd place finish last season and secondly they can’t really stop me buying who I want anyway! I chased Maldini all summer as he was out of contract however it seems he is the only loyal player in the game which is funny because in all my other saves he usually sods of to Juve after the first season. Anyway aside from him I am really happy and excited about the players I have signed.
That’s 10 players for less than 20 million, you literally can’t do business like that anymore says Jamie Redknapp when asked. You know Jamie I think for once you might be right. If you are wondering who Marino Admiraal and Arnar Danielsson are, think Ruud Gullit reborn and everyone’s favorite Icelandic regen. I’ve never signed Montella before but I have seen him do good things in other saves, plus I enjoyed the opportunity to mirror reality and we need a proper striker. The experience of Abelardo will hopefully help tighten the defense. I had to let a lot of the original squad go to make way.
I’m only sad to see Aldair go but at 32 he is past his best and he didn’t fancy a year long deal. I felt like the four years he was asking for was a tad excessive so he’s off to pastures new. Will he regret not sticking around for one more season?
Unfortunately moments after he signs this happens:
After a couple of preseason friendlies the Champions league qualifying comes through.
Not too bad a draw, the squad is all assembled, Admiraal and Inzaghi are cup tied and will have to wait for the quarter finals, if we get there, otherwise we are all good to go. The team is chosen and we are still running the same tactic. Petruzzi is captain, I’m not convinced by him, probably because his strength is only 9, but I think Totti is a little young at the moment.
I’ll take that, shame about Tommasi, he was really good last season and I have big plans for him but we have some strength in depth now so we will be ok.
The Supercoppa Italiana is our next fixture, a quick check tells me that Juve won the league and Coppa Italia last season so we are drafted in as second place finishers.
What a result, the game was very even and we dig deep when down to ten men to hold on for the victory. We leave Turin with my first trophy as Roma manager and Marcello Lippi wishing that winning the league and cup double meant he could have played a 1s vs 2s game.
Just before we play the second leg of our CL tie a little bit of news regarding our ex centre back.
Not sure that is where I would have chosen. I’ll check if Galatasaray are in the CL, maybe we will have a little reunion. No we won’t, they are in the Cup Winners Cup.
We win the second leg of the champions league qualifier and are into the Champions League proper. Totti and Montella seem to be gelling nicely and then Telli, that’s what the lads are calling him, goes and gets himself injured for a few weeks! Good job I bought Inzaghi as well.
Not too bad a group apart from Barca, I think they are the hardest team to beat early on in the game and Vitor Baia always seems impossible to score past. With a bit of luck we could make it to the quarters.
We have four internationals in the squad, I’m hoping to increase this by the end of the season. Totti finally getting a call up after being blanked for the World Cup, I mean why would you take the second top scorer in Serie A to the World Cup.
Coppa Italia time again and I am hoping to improve on my one and done from last season. We face Empoli who really go for the victory. Inzaghi scores in his first start as a little extra bonus.
Juve strengthen their defense with everyones favourite Nigerian centre back, I’m really not sure they need him but who am I to question.
Dodged a bullet there.
We play Milan in our first league game and Capello is at it again, last time Kluivert was sweeping and now it is Weah, the guy’s a nutter.
We take the victory and a brace for Inzaghi against his ‘alternate reality’ future club. He joined Milan in 2001 in real life, maybe he will again.
Telli is back and in for our first CL game against Dinamo Tblisi. He gets a goal and Bisgaard with a brace, we’ve won every game so far and I’m flying high.
Sampdoria bring us back down to earth with a bump as our former Brazilian Forward L/R Paulo Sergio (bloody ridiculous positions, where are you actually meant to play them?) equalises in the 55th minute and we draw 1:1.
Capello signs another striker to play as a sweeper.
Petruzzi is starting to wind me up, he’s an international, our captain and highly rated by the scouts if you do a quick search of your own team but he is playing gash and I blame him and him alone for our draw with Sampdoria and the fact we played so poorly in our 1:0 victory over Napoli, he just isn’t the inspiring leader we need. He is out, Abelardo is in to partner Santos and Totti is the new captain. At 22 I’m worried he is a bit young, but there was no need. Abelardo with a great 8 on debut.
Two MOM performances and five goals, I nod smugly to myself. Obviously Bisgaard gets sent off for two bookables. All he cares about is beating his 35 disciplinary points from last season.
If you followed the first season you might remember that I signed TSL (I’m not sure people call him that) but I wasn’t sure that he was needed. Well it turns out he wasn’t and the lack of first team action means he asks to leave. Sorry Tommy, I’ll sign you in another game I promise.
We will try not to let TSL’s news unsettle us and we are flying in the league, having won the previous two league matches scoring 7 and conceding 3 we travel to Catalunya with high hopes.
Barca bring us back down to earth, we are not quite there yet. We did well for 69 minutes but Barca are class so I’m not too upset. We are second in the group with 6 points at the halfway stage. The Coppa Italia draw comes out and we are at home to Atalanta in the quarters, all we have to do is get past Serie C side Chievo Verona, that surely won’t be a problem.
I forgot this guy was even in the squad, he is the lost Brazilian. I’ve seen him get called up for Brazil before but he hasn’t impressed me so far. I think I like him less than Petruzzi.
Next up we face our bogey side from last season. We pipped Parma to 2nd on the last game of the season even though they managed the double over us last season. This year however.
They can’t live with us and Totti is flying, being captain is bringing out the best in him. In this sort of form I feel so confident that I rest a few players for the cup tie allowing a few second stringers to have a game.
Well that was a little unexpected and I’m in a state of shock at this one, there isn’t really any logical explanation “that’s football” I guess. I made it one round further than last year so if we keeping improving like this it’s only three more years before we make the final. The two substitutions I made in the 74th minute clearly did not have the desired effect.
Err, what do I need to do to get an award round here? Probably not lose to Chievo I hear you say. I guess Capello’s new sweeper is really working out for him. We host Empoli for the last game of this chapter, it’s only our 8th league game but it seems like loads has happened.
Another win, another Totti goal, although he probably should have had two. My keeper Landreau gets MOM, I haven’t needed to mention him much but he is really proving his worth. Funnily enough he is another player I had never bought before but I’ve seen how good he can be when playing against him and I’m pleased to say he hadn’t disappointed.
After 8 games it’s 7 wins and a draw. I’ve won the last 6 on the bounce. I’m scoring goals and conceding less. Sorry Petruzzi but the proof is in the pudding. The Coppa Italia is my bogey competition so I have two trophies left to play for. Join me for part 2 to see if we can make the CL quarters and if we can keep this strong league form going.